Free Antivirus 2018: Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition VS Avast Free Antivirus

by Tomas Statkus - -

Windows users should be aware of all the cyber threats targeting their devices and attempting to steal their data, money or sensitive information. In this case, a reliable antivirus application is a must! Because not everyone wants to pay for an antivirus solution, users should check free options. This article will provide information and evaluation about ones of the best free antivirus solutions in the market! So check it out.

Bitdefender VS avast

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition is a product by Romanian cybersecurity company Bitdefender. The company was established in 2001 and successfully operates the cybersecurity market. Today the company protects over 500 million customers in over 150 countries across the globe. It provides security software and hardware for individual devices, smart homes and IoT devices, businesses, and large enterprises.[1]

The company uses machine learning and other advanced technology in order to provide a superior protection against various cyber threats.

Bitdefender provides a range of Windows security products including Bitdefender Antivirus Plus, Bitdefender Internet Security, Bitdefender Total Security, Bitdefender Family Pack, and Bitdefender Box. So if the free edition would seem not enough for you, you can choose from a various paid antivirus solutions and security suites for complete protection. 

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition

Antivirus protection

Bitdefender applies same antivirus defenses for its all Windows products, that makes Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition a good choice if you are looking for a superior protection against viruses and other malware. The defenses start with a traditional scanning engine that looks for matching malware signatures in order to detect already known widespread malware, the heuristic monitoring checks for suspicious behaviors to reveal previously unseen zero-day malware. Anything suspicious is also sent to the company’s cloud-based servers for further analysis. 

When it comes to the actual protection rates, Bitdefender does a superior job and detected all the malware samples installed on the test computer. 

The application also scans email attachments and blocks known malicious websites.

Additional features

When it comes to additional features, Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition does not offer many. It has a stand-alone home-network scanner and Bitdefender Traffic Light browser extensions that support Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome and Apple Safari. However, both features must be installed separately. 

System-performance impact and scans

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition has a very low system-performance impact. The developers did a good job in terms of resource consumption. The passive impact is only about 4%, while during active scans the system was impacted by 15% which is very low. 

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition does not provide a quick scan feature, the first full-system scan took over 50minutes but later on, the application scanned the full system in couple minutes. 

Bitdefender protected

User interface

The interface is functional and uncluttered. However, it could also be a bit difficult to navigate, since the antivirus does not provide many features in its free version.

The Final Verdict 

Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition offers superior malware protection with a very light system-performance impact. However, it does not offer many useful security and privacy features, so it would be a solution for those, who do not care about other features and need to keep their devices clean and malware-free.

Feature Score
Antivirus protection Excellent
Additional features Very low
System-performance impact Low
Scans Quick full scan without noticeable impact
User interface Could be difficult to navigate

Avast Free Antivirus 

Avast Antivirus Free is created by Avast, one of the largest companies that operate in the cybersecurity industry. The company applies next-gen technologies in order to provide its users reliable and advanced software that prevent and protect them against any cyber threats. Avast security software protects over 400 million its customers in 150 countries around the world and prevents 3.5 billion attacks every month.[2]

Avast offers Windows users free version and three paid versions of security software including Avast Internet Security, Avast Premium, and Avast Ultimate. 

Avast free

Antivirus protection

Avast, just like Bitdefender uses same malware detection technology it free version as in paid products. The defenses start from a traditional malware signature-matching engine and heuristic monitoring. Anything suspicious is sent to Avast cloud-based servers for further analysis. 

According to AV-TEST, Avast caught from 99.7% to 100% both, known and unknown malware. It is not the best score in the market, but the protection is still very good. 

Additional features

Avast Free Antivirus offers a decent set of security and privacy features, including a secure web browser, a password manager, home network scanner, or hardened browser. Many of these features usually come only in paid antivirus programs, while Avast offers them for free. 

System-performance impact and scans

Avast Free Antivirus does not drain computer system and does not use many system’s resources. In addition, the antivirus does not have a noticeable impact during scans. 

The full scan took similar than Bitdefender, just up 50 minutes. However, Avast’s scans do not get shorter, like Bitdefender’s do. 

User interface

Avast user interface, just like Bitdefender’s cannot be resized or viewed full screen but can be moved around. The interface is simple and easy to navigate, as all major categories appear in the main window.

Avast free passwords feature

The Final Verdict

Avast Free Antivirus combines advanced malware protection and a light system impact. It also has a modern looking, simple user interface and a decent set of additional features.

Feature Score
Antivirus protecion Very good
Additional features Many
System-performance impact Very light
Scans Mediocre speed scans without negative impact on a system
User interface Dark, modern looking, and simple to use

To summarize

Avast Free Antivirus has everything users would expect from a free security solution. It combines a very good malware protection, light system impact, a very decent set of features including a secure web browser, a password manager, Wi-Fo inspector, hardened browser and more. 

When it comes to Bitdefender, Bitdefender Antivirus Free Edition offers superior malware protection with almost none negative system impact, however, it lacks many additional features, compared to Avast. This is why Avast Free Antivirus the one we would recommend. 

About the author

Tomas Statkus
Tomas Statkus - Team leader

Tomas Statkus is an IT specialist, the team leader, and the founder of He has worked in the IT area for over 10 years.

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